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Just so i can better understand how to handle special requests when we open...
Three shots, a cup and some ice... not a problem if that is it.
This ghetto latte talk? If it's rung up as three singles or a double and a single (but served in a single cup) then the added cost of the additional paper products and condiments could cover the additional dairy product. Would that work?
Also Mike, will my SP-1 Selby Soft be able to handle these personalized requests? I don't speak Starbuckese so all these half this and decalf, double, watchamacalit in a tall cup with crushed ice not cubed...
I guess I'm just going to have to hang out here and keep learning...
~80)
to be fair,
you gotta cater to the stupid customers too, otherwise this will happen.
it sucks, but if you're in a service industry and there's no talking sense into people who want a subpar drink, it's still your duty to give the customer what he/she wants.
the barista shoulda offered the americano right off the bat, though. i think that would maybe have prevented all this.
i think this whole bit boils down to the ability to deal with shitty customers- and they happen so you need to be able to talk them down from being shitty- and the barista not thinking on his feet and recommending a better drink that is not against policy so everyone could just be happy and talk this shit out.
customer service and product knowledge are big things- it doesn't matter how good you are at preparing drinks if you can't deal with people properly.


and the dollar thing was just a dick move.
I somewhat agree with you lindsay... there will always be those customers that demand service above and beyond, to cater to their need for a "subpar drink". And while it may be our duty to serve the customer to the fullest, there is, I believe, in the coffee industry, a certain integrity of our product that we, like the Murky guys, also feel the need to uphold and there is definitely a middleground that needs to be reached when it comes to dealing with these kinds of customers. The tone and choice of words, your body language, all of that can have an effect on the way the customer will react to a situation like this... its a tricky one.
I think one of the most important part of our jobs as baristas, managers, owners (or whatever you are) is educating our customers. Maybe if the barista had explained to the customer why that policy was in place, and then offering the americano instead, this whole fiasco would have been avoided. Would it have been that hard for the barista to explain the policy? It might have been. They might not have known why that policy is in place. For managers and owners - you will not always be there when situations arise, make sure your baristas are equipped with the answers to policies like that. They are on the front line for you, do not put them out there unprepared. Perhaps, if the guest had known why that rule was in place, they might not have wanted to drink anymore. Or offering the alternative americano, they may have never heard of it before, and it might become their new drink. I guess my point is, not everyone knows as much about coffee as you do - this is your chance to shine and share your knowledge with them. But when it comes down to it, you have a choice to make: accomodate their request or lose their business. If you don't accomodate their request, someone else will be happy to.
I am so tired of people assuming that the customer in question, or any customer for that matter is an idiot. Did he behave like a lunatic? Yes. Was he treated with respect and given a chance to avoid this series of events? Not so much. I personally enjoy throwing a few shots on ice and sipping them until they are gone. Does it make me a stupid customer? I say no. I find iced americanos to be too light and watery for my taste, and some cold press to be to heavy, so I ice espresso, or iced americano, no water, that is whatever I have to say to get the barista to deliver 4 shots in a cup full of ice. I trust my taste buds and my mood to dictate what I order, just as I will make a Raspberry white mocha with extra white chocolate and sell it fo nearly six dollars if someone orders it, I need to put money in the register! I certainly tease my regulars who need "Extra Cream" or "Four splendas" and myself for "bastardizing espresso" when I ice it. The culture at my shop lends itself to this sort of banter, and to me splenda is about the worst thing you can do to coffee or espresso. But the first time I see anybody my goal is to create a new regular customer, and educate them on what it is we do here. SIMULTANEOUSLY!! It is not an either, or. I would rather have them feel good about the experience, and confident the next time they come in, versus threatening arson and spreading ill will. I beleive specialty coffee should focus more on inclusion and less on how cool we think we are for being specialty.
Very nicely put Justin. Couldn't agree with you more!
I haven't been on the retail side for a while, but I'm just now contemplating getting my own thing going, so this conversation is very interesting to me.
I absolutely agree with Justin. Can't we simultaneously service customers and educate them? If I open my own place, I will uphold absolute integrity of my product first and foremost, but I also believe in integrity of service. Coffee is an experience not just a beverage. I hope to create a place where the entire experience introduces someone new to a true love of specialty coffee because the entire experience puts them in the right mindset to stop everything they are doing and have been doing to enjoy the specific moment of enjoying my coffee.
And, I hope to always be very careful about ever assuming that customers are stupid or that they should not have the right ask for what they want. We can just do a good job in clarifying what we offer, why our offerings are limited, and help them have a much better cup of coffee.
Best wishes,
Andi

Please forgive any small typos caused by the necessity of using voice dictation.
Hey thanks for backing me up guys. I was unusually upset over the things I had been reading around this event, probably just pressures of the week mounting, but my pet peeve is business owners driving out customers and justifying it saying its about quality. Now I think aybe that will send people to my door and I shouldn't mind that some shops don't value each customer the way that I try to. ( and I am not always so good at this myself) Anyway I like to hear there are others who still care about coffee AND people.
Justin Mills said:
I am so tired of people assuming that the customer in question, or any customer for that matter is an idiot. Did he behave like a lunatic? Yes. Was he treated with respect and given a chance to avoid this series of events? Not so much.
Unless you were there for the fiasco, what you said is pure speculation. For the record, it does NOT match up with the story on either side.

If you want to argue store policy, please do, but do not judge the baristas at the time for enforcing the rules of the business which they represent while on the clock behind the bar. In fact, they actually broke policy to please the customer.

The "controversial" part of the issue should never have been made public information in the first place. If we want to discuss drink standards or whatever, fine. Let's not judge someone for something we did not witness and do not really fully understand.
I was going on the assumption that the customer felt disrespected when the server at the register rolled his eyes, now I realize that I wasn't there, but I think cursing out a barista is rude, and I think rolling your eyes at a customer is rude. As for the rest of what you said, I couldn't agree more. I apologize if anyone thinks I was being overly judgemental, like I said, I was unusually amped up after reading this story, not sure why. I usually don't try to be inflamitory, or preachy, and nine out of ten times I am on the barista's side, I just felt compelled to speak out on behalf of those who don't get the education, in specialty coffee, sure they don't all throw fits( and let's all be thankfull for that), but we owe it to them and our industry to create satisfied customers. Jason Haeger said:
Justin Mills said:
I am so tired of people assuming that the customer in question, or any customer for that matter is an idiot. Did he behave like a lunatic? Yes. Was he treated with respect and given a chance to avoid this series of events? Not so much.
Unless you were there for the fiasco, what you said is pure speculation. For the record, it does NOT match up with the story on either side.

If you want to argue store policy, please do, but do not judge the baristas at the time for enforcing the rules of the business which they represent while on the clock behind the bar. In fact, they actually broke policy to please the customer.

The "controversial" part of the issue should never have been made public information in the first place. If we want to discuss drink standards or whatever, fine. Let's not judge someone for something we did not witness and do not really fully understand.
I must now humbly admit that I had one of my baristas ice some espresso and whip up an iced americano, and the americano wins the blind taste test, so perhaps I needed to be re-educated myself from time to time.
Justin Mills said:
I was going on the assumption that the customer felt disrespected when the server at the register rolled his eyes, now I realize that I wasn't there, but I think cursing out a barista is rude, and I think rolling your eyes at a customer is rude. As for the rest of what you said, I couldn't agree more. I apologize if anyone thinks I was being overly judgemental, like I said, I was unusually amped up after reading this story, not sure why. I usually don't try to be inflamitory, or preachy, and nine out of ten times I am on the barista's side, I just felt compelled to speak out on behalf of those who don't get the education, in specialty coffee, sure they don't all throw fits( and let's all be thankfull for that), but we owe it to them and our industry to create satisfied customers. Jason Haeger said:
Justin Mills said:
I am so tired of people assuming that the customer in question, or any customer for that matter is an idiot. Did he behave like a lunatic? Yes. Was he treated with respect and given a chance to avoid this series of events? Not so much.
Unless you were there for the fiasco, what you said is pure speculation. For the record, it does NOT match up with the story on either side.

If you want to argue store policy, please do, but do not judge the baristas at the time for enforcing the rules of the business which they represent while on the clock behind the bar. In fact, they actually broke policy to please the customer.

The "controversial" part of the issue should never have been made public information in the first place. If we want to discuss drink standards or whatever, fine. Let's not judge someone for something we did not witness and do not really fully understand.
Could somebody please bring something useful to this discussion and let the group know... what has been the effect of this flap on business at Murky?

Are customers truly being driven away in huge numbers, as foretold by the sages? No speculation, please... I'm looking for actual reality here. Please, I would check it out myself but can't make the trip.

Thanks in advance. But do be careful and wear the appropriate protective gear.

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